Shatner, whose parents immigrated to Canada from Ukraine, is visiting the Jewish State as part of the Jewish National Fund's efforts to raise $10 million for therapeutic riding centers across Israel.
Shatner enjoys breeding and showing American Saddlebreds and Quarter Horses and has a 360-acre horse farm in Kentucky named Bellreve, where he raises the winning horses.
The actor is excited about the construction of centers using riding as therapy across Israel. One such center is located at Kibbutz Grofit. It offers psychological evaluations and therapy designed to meet the needs of physically, emotionally, and mentally handicapped children. The center, staffed by medical professionals and using horses, runs the length of the school year, September through July.
Shatner said he hopes to create cooperation on the project between Israelis and Arabs from both the PA-controlled areas and the Hashemite Kingdom in Jordan. "What better way to create dialogue than by helping handicapped children from different countries feel good about themselves?" Shatner said of the project.